Advisory Council

Dr. Najmedin Meshkati

Professor of Civil/Environmental Engineering and Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering, University of Southern California

Dr. Najmedin (Najm) Meshkati, Ph.D., CPE is a (tenured) Professor of Civil/Environmental Engineering and a Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Viterbi School of Engineering, University of Southern California (USC). He was a Jefferson Science Fellow, and a Senior Science and Engineering Advisor, Office of Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State (2009-2010), Washington, DC. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering/National Research Councilís Committee on the Analysis of Causes of the Deepwater Horizon Explosion, Fire, and Oil Spill to Identify Measures to Prevent Similar Accidents in the Future (2010-2011).

For the past 25 years, he has been teaching and conducting research on risk reduction and reliability enhancement of complex technological systems, including nuclear power, aviation, and petrochemical and transportation industries. He has written many articles on human factors, safety culture and accident causation. In addition, Dr. Meshkati has inspected many petrochemical and nuclear power plants around the world, including Chernobyl in 1997. He worked with the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, as an expert advisor in human factors and safety culture, on the investigation of the BP Refinery explosion in Texas City (2005), and also served as a member of the National Research Council (NRC) Committee on Human Performance, Organizational Systems and Maritime Safety. He also served as a member of the NRC Marine Boardís Subcommittee on Coordinated R&D Strategies for Human Performance to Improve Marine Operations and Safety.

He is an elected Fellow of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, an AT&T Faculty Fellow in Industrial Ecology, a NASA Faculty Fellow (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 2003 and 2004), and a recipient of the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 1989. He is the 2007 recipient of the Oliver Keith Hansen Outreach Award from the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) and was honored by the HFES for his ìscholarly efforts on human factors of complex, large-scale technological systems.

Professor Meshkati has received numerous teaching awards at USC that include the 2000 TRW Award for Excellence and Outstanding Achievement in Teaching from the USC Viterbi School of Engineering; the 1996, 2003, 2006, 2007 and 2008 Professor of Year Award (Excellence in Teaching and Dedication to Students Award) from the Daniel J. Epstein Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering; the 1997 Outstanding Teaching Award (ìfor excellence in teaching based on studentsí course evaluationsî) from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering; the Mortar Boardís Honored Faculty Award (2007-2008) from the University of Southern Californiaís Chapter of the Mortar Board; and the Outstanding Teaching Award from The Latter-day Saint Student Association at USC (April 11, 2008). He was selected as a Faculty Fellow by the Center for Excellence in Teaching, USC (2008-2011).

He is the co-editor and a primary author of the book Human Mental Workload, North-Holland, 1988, and his articles on public policy; the risk, reliability, and environmental impact of complex, large-scale technological systems; and foreign policy-related issues have been published in several national and international newspapers and academic journals. He coordinated international efforts which culminated in the publication of the International Labor Office Ergonomic Checkpoints book in 1996, and for which he received the Ergonomics of Technology Transfer Award from the International Ergonomics Association in 2000. This book has been translated and published into Arabic, Bahasa Indonesia, Chinese, Farsi, French, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, and Thai. His commentary articles and view points on public policy; the risk, reliability, and environmental impact of complex, large-scale technological systems; and foreign policy have been published in many national and international newspapers and magazines, e.g., The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Daily News, Wall Street Journal, Baltimore Sun, Houston Chronicle, The Newsday, Miami Herald, Anchorage Daily News, USA Today, MIT Technology Review, Air Transport World, Japan Times, The Australian, International Herald Tribune, Wall Street Journal Europe, Asian Wall Street Journal, Winnipeg Free Press, Waterloo Region Record, Windsor Star, The Gulf Today (UAE), The Korea Herald, and The India Times.

Dr. Meshkati simultaneously received a B.S. in Industrial Engineering and a B.A. in Political Science in 1976, from Sharif (Arya-Meher) University of Technology and Shahid Beheshti University (National University of Iran), respectively; a M.S. in Engineering Management in 1978; and a Ph.D. in Industrial and Systems Engineering in 1983 from USC. He is a Certified Professional Ergonomist.